How Narada Muni get his guru?

Value: Truth

Sub value: Devotion, Faith

Did you know that at one time Narada Muni did not have a Guru?

At one time, when he was  travelling the Three Worlds; Narada Muni happened to attend an assembly at Heaven or Svarga loka, where all Devas and Devis are present. (The Hindu pantheon has all 33 crores devatas and all the Nine Planets.) At the assembly, there was a sacred fire  ritual or Homa going on,  and Vedic rites being conducted. Narada was  given a seat in the lowest category  amongst  the seating arrangement available, far away from the homa.

When Narada questioned Brahma,  being Brahma’s own child, why was Narada given such a lowly place to sit? Brahma told him, it was because Narada  never had a Guru.  Narada considered this, and realized he did not have a Guru or a gurumantra.

In other words, although he  sang the Lord Narayanas name, and repeated Gods name as a mantra, He had never taken a mantra as initiated by a Guru. So with a firm resolution, Narada declared to the Devatas or Gods in the assembly that ,  Whoever I see first at dawn, I will take that person as my Guru. Narada Muni then left the assembly with the promise to return soon.

Soon it was at dawn and Narada saw an old fisherman with his fishing net on the shoulder, both walking and weaving his net. Narada ran to the fisherman and declared to the old man that the fisherman was  his Guru and begged for initiation from the old man.

The old man said he was not worthy and that he had never himself taken initiation from a Guru so  he didnt have any mantra to give. Nevertheless, Narada requested from the old man to speak whatever was in his mind at that very moment.  At Narada’s relentless insistence, the fisherman said “Hari Bol”! Having received gurumantra,   an ecstatic Narada returned to the assembly of Devatas and asked for a seat in front of the Assembly , as now he had both a Guru and a Mantra.

The assembly demanded to meet His Guru, upon which Narada returned to the Fisherman and requested the old man to come. As the old man was partially lame, so Narada  had to carry the old man on his back. Narada presented the old man to the assembly and then gave His full pranam, prostrating completely down before His Guru.

The 33 crores of Gods or Devatas were surprised.

At that moment the old man transformed into Shiva before all of them.

For Shiva was not at that Assembly.

And so, what kind of Assembly was it?

And so we now  understand, the Guru of Narada is Shiva Himself.

Lord Brahma, father of Narada Muni is also his Guru because Lord Brahma had given him knowledge of Srimad Bhagavatam.

Learning:

This story illustrate how everyone should have proper guidance from spiritual teacher on his path of bhakti.

Guru often can manifest to us in a ways which we often cannot recognize.

Guru who direct us to Krishna may not be always Swami with long beard. Krishna can manifest throw everyone and help us advance.

Source  adapted from bhagavatam-katha.com

Master’s messages- Vol 1- Chapter 11-Man And God: Nara And Narayana

Sathya Sai Speaks Vol 1- Chapter 11

Nara will become the divine vehicle of Narayana if Nara acquires two qualities of Sathya and Prema.

Practise what you preach

Individual reconstruction is much more important than the construction of temples. Multiply virtues, not buildings; practise what you preach, that is the real pilgrimage; cleanse your minds of envy and malice, that is the real bath in holy waters.

Man is suffering today consequent to his own actions.

Of what avail is the name of the Lord on the tongue if the heart within is impure.People have to set themselves right and correct their food, their recreation, their method of spending their leisure as well as habits of thought.

Three types of intellect

For understanding this ,the intellect has to be kept sharp and clear. There are 3 types of intellect – Thamas (inertia/sloth), which confuses truth with untruth and takes untruth as truth; Rajas (passion/activity)-which like a pendulum swings confused between the truth and untruth and can’t distinguish between them; Sathwa (Purity /serenity)-which knows which is truth and which is untruth.

Sense of Discrimination with Equanimous intellect is necessary to reach One’s goal.

The wisdom in hot chocolate ( Develop equal mindedness)

http://media.radiosai.org/journals/vol_10/01MAY12/09_chocolate.htm

Leading to Mukthi

Eat well so that your physical faculties and intelligence grow. Bhakti (devotion) will lead to Shakti(power); this will grant Yukthi(skill) ,which will lead to Rakthi ( help fix your attachment on proper objects) ,and this will finally lead you to Mukthi (liberation).

Do unto others as you would like them to do unto you .

https://saibalsanskaar.wordpress.com/2014/06/04/wooden-bowls/

Others are not separate from you

Instead of criticising others and finding faults with them(because of ego) ,look for your own faults , as faults in others is a reflection of your own personality traits.  Pay no heed to little worries; attach your mind to the Lord. This will lead you to good company of people where your talents will be transmuted.

Be a bee, not a mosquito

Bee drinks and distributes nectar while a mosquito drinks blood and spreads disease.

Give up anger,envy,cynicism and falsehood.

Have Prema (love) in your heart. Believe that Love is God, Truth is God. Love is Truth ,Truth is Love.

Be grateful to parents . Parents ,as servants of God, must encourage children when they evince any interest in spiritual advance and study

https://saibalsanskaar.wordpress.com/2013/03/07/an-exemplary-balvikas-guru-tribute-to-my-mum-on-her-18th-anniversary/

Focus on the Atma

Not on the transitory body.Give up the delusion you are this physical body .

Develop Sathya (truth) and Prema(love)

you will receive everything without asking. Man (nara) and God(Narayana)are two wires-positive and negative which combine to bring electricity.

Nara will become the divine vehicle of Narayana if Nara acquires two qualities of Sathya and Prema.

YOU CANNOT PAINT THE WHOLE WORLD GREEN

Value : Truth

Sub value : Acceptance

There was a millionaire once who was bothered by two aches, one in his stomach and the other in his head! Once diagnosed he was treated by a galaxy of medical experts; and had to consume heavy loads of drugs, and  injections. Yet, the aches persisted with greater vigour than ever before!

At last, a monk arrived at the scene of his agony. He spoke very kindly to the millionaire, and pronounced the fault to be in his eye! “Set right the eye, and the head on top and the stomach below would both behave very sweetly! To improve the eye, concentrate on only one colour. Concentrate on green. Do not let your eyes fall on red or yellow, or any other colour”, suggested the Monk.

The millionaire rallied a group of painters and purchased barrels of green colour and directed that every object on which his  eye was likely to fall, be painted thick green.

A few days later the monk came to visit him , the millionaires’s servants ran with buckets of green paint and poured it on the Monk, as he was in red clothes. Lest their master see any other colour, the pain in his eye would come back, was the only concern of the servants.

Seeing  this, the monk laughed and said “If only you had purchased a pair of green glasses, worth just a few dollars, you could have saved these walls and trees and pots and pans, and chairs and sofas and also a pretty large share of your fortune! You cannot paint the world green.”

Learning:

 

How often do we try to change other people, and get frustrated when they refuse to change? But how often do we take a look at ourselves? If we would just change our own outlook, change our own way of thinking, change our own actions, our change might motivate others to change as well. Mahatma Gandhi said, “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”

Let us change our vision and the world will appear accordingly. It is foolish to shape the world, let us shape ourselves first.

Source: Chinna Katha

THE COW AND THE TIGER – *The surrendered soul’s confidence.*

Value        : Surrender

Sub value : faith

 


Once upon a time, a cow went out to graze in the jungle. Suddenly, she noticed a tiger racing towards her. She turned and fled, fearing that at any moment the tiger would sink his claws into her. The cow desperately looked for some place to escape and at last saw a shallow pond. Barely evading the tiger’s reach, she jumped into the pond, and in the heat of the chase, the tiger blindly leaped after her.

To the surprise of them both, the pond was extremely shallow yet filled with deep recesses of mud. After toppling over each other, the cow and the tiger found themselves a short distance apart, stuck in the mud up to their necks. Both had their heads above water but were unable to free themselves no matter how much they writhed.

The tiger repeatedly snarled at the cow and roared, “I am going to enjoy the sound of crunching your bones between my teeth!”

He thrashed about in a fury but soon became fretful as he found no prospect of escape.

*The cow thoughtfully laughed as the tiger struggled to free himself and asked him, “Do you have a master?”*

The tiger disdainfully replied, “I am the king of the jungle. Why do you ask me if I have a master? I myself am the master!”

The cow said, “You may be the king of the jungle, but here all your power has failed to save your life.”

“And what about you?” Retorted the tiger. “You are going to die here in this mud too!”’

The cow smiled mildly and said, “No, I am not.”

“If even I, the king of the jungle cannot free myself from this mud”, snapped the tiger, “Then how can you, an ordinary cow?”

*The cow gently replied, “I cannot free myself from this mud, but my master can. When the sun sets and he finds me absent at home, he will come looking for me. Once he finds me, he will raise me up and escort me home sweet home.”*

The tiger fell silent and coldly glared at the cow.

*Soon enough, the sun set, and the cow’s master arrived. He immediately recognised the plight she was in and lifted her to safety. As they walked home, the cow and the master both felt renewed gratitude for one another and pitied the tiger they both would have been happy to save if only the tiger had allowed them.*

Learning
The cow represents a surrendered soul, the tiger represents an proud person, and the master represents almighty God who is known as the loving protector of the cows and the world. The mud represents the material world, and the chase represents the struggle for existence therein.

*The surrendered soul relies upon the Lord rather than themselves for all the necessities of life. No matter how many troubles appeared to be created by the proud persons of the world who reject the guardianship of the Lord out of the false ego of considering themselves capable of fending for themselves, the surrendered souls know that everything is really in the hands of the Lord, the all-loving. They are fully confident in His protection, though they know sometimes they just need to wait a little while until sundown.*

Buddha Tales – Power of chanting Lord’s name

Value          : Devotion
Subvalue   : faith, conviction
 
Once, Lord Buddha knocked at the door of a lady for alms. While offering the food, the lady asked Him, “Why do people remember God by chanting his Name and attending satsang? Are they important?”
Lord Buddha smiled, and promised that He would tell her the answer the next day. He also requested her to prepare plenty of Kheer ( a liquid rice pudding), to be able to answer the question she had asked. The lady did not understand why Lord Buddha needed the Kheer. But since she was very curious, she decided to prepare the Kheer for Him.
The next day, Lord Buddha came and requested for alms in His bowl. The lady brought the big vessel of Kheer she had prepared, and stepped forward to pour the Kheer in the bowl. She was surprised to find that the bowl was full of mud. There was no space to pour the Kheer. She did not know what to do.
Lord Buddha instructed her to pour the Kheer on top of the mud. She followed the instructions and began pouring the Kheer into the bowl.
At first, the Kheer spilled on the ground, but gradually, due to the force with which the Kheer flowed into the bowl, the mud began to spill out as well. Finally, all the mud spilled out, and the bowl was filled to the top with Kheer. She was puzzled about why Lord Buddha had asked her to pour and waste so much of the Kheer.
Lord Buddha then explained, “I have just showed you the importance of chanting (the Lord’s Name) and satsang on the impure mind.
When we chant and attend satsang, we constantly pour the positive thought of God’s Name into our mind. Even if our mind is at first filled with bad qualities like anger, jealousy, greed, lust, etc., these slowly wash away, and it is then filled with God’s Name that is full of purity and joy like God is.”
The lady understood instantly and started chanting God’s Name with faith everyday.
Learning: 
The above story explains how chanting the Lord’s Name, and attending satsang purify the mind. Like the lady, we too, can start chanting God’s Name, and try to be in satsang of saints or at least spiritual books, to get rid of our negative feelings and experience joy everyday.

Nagarjuna and his begging bowl

Value     : Honesty

Subvalue : obedience, discipline

 

A beautiful story is told about a great mystic, Nagarjuna:

He was a fakir, but he was loved by all real seekers. A queen asked him one day to come to the palace, to be a guest in the palace. Nagarjuna went. The queen asked him a favour.

Nagarjuna said, “What do you want?”

The queen said, “I want your begging bowl.”

Nagarjuna gave it — that was the only thing he had — his begging bowl. And the queen brought a golden begging bowl, studded with diamonds and gave it to Nagarjuna. She said, “Now you keep this. I will worship the begging bowl that you have carried for years — it has some of your vibe. It will become my temple. And a man like you should not carry an ordinary wooden begging bowl — keep this golden one. I have had it made specially for you.”

It was really precious. If Nagarjuna had been an ordinary mystic he would have said, “I cannot touch it. I have renounced the world.” But for him it was all the same, so he took the bowl.

When he left the palace, a thief saw him. He could not believe his eyes: “A naked man with such a precious thing! How long can he protect it?” So the thief followed….

Nagarjuna was staying outside the town in a ruined ancient temple — no doors, no windows. It was just a ruin. The thief was very happy: “Soon Nagarjuna will have to go to sleep and there will be no difficulty — I will get the bowl.”

The thief was hiding behind a wall just outside the door — Nagarjuna threw the bowl outside the door. The thief could not believe what had happened. Nagarjuna threw it because he had watched the thief coming behind him, and he knew perfectly well that he was not coming for him — he was coming for the bowl, “So why unnecessarily let him wait? Be finished with it so he can go, and I can also rest.”

“Such a precious thing! And Nagarjuna has thrown it so easily.” The thief could not go without thanking him. He knew perfectly well that it had been thrown for him. He peeked in and he said, “Sir, accept my thanks. But you are a rare being — I cannot believe my eyes. And a great desire has arisen in me. I am wasting my life by being a thief — and there are people like you too? Can I come in and touch your feet?”

Nagarjuna laughed and he said, “Yes, that’s why I threw the bowl outside — so that you could come inside.”

The thief was trapped. The thief came in, touched the feet… and at that moment the thief was very open because he had seen that this man was no ordinary man. He was very vulnerable, open, receptive, grateful, mystified, stunned. When he touched the feet, for the first time in his life he felt the presence of the divine.

He asked Nagarjuna, “How many lives will it take for me to become like you?”

Nagarjuna said, “How many lives? — it can happen today, it can happen now!”

The thief said, “You must be kidding. How can it happen now? I am a thief, a well-known thief The whole town knows me, although they have not yet been able to catch hold of me. Even the king is afraid of me, because thrice I have entered and stolen from the treasury. They know it, but they have no proof. I am a master thief — you may not know about me because you are a stranger in these parts. How can I be transformed right now?”

And Nagarjuna said, “If in an old house for centuries there has been darkness and you bring a candle, can the darkness say, ‘For centuries and centuries I have been here — I cannot go out just because you have brought a candle in. I have lived so long’? Can the darkness give resistance? Will it make any difference whether the darkness is one day old or millions of years old.

The thief could see the point: darkness cannot resist light; when light comes, darkness disappears. Nagarjuna said, You may have been in darkness for millions of lives — that doesn’t matter — but I can give you a secret, you can light a candle in your being.”

And the thief said, “What about my profession? Have I to leave it?”

Nagarjuna said, “That is for you to decide. I am not concerned with you and your profession I can only give you the secret of how to kindle a light within your being, and then it is up to you.”

The thief said, “But whenever I have gone to any saints, they always say, ‘First stop stealing — then only can you be initiated.'”

It is said that Nagarjuna laughed and said, “You must have gone to thieves, not to saints. They know nothing. You just watch your breath — the ancient method of Buddha — just watch your breath coming in, going out. Whenever you remember, watch your breath. Even when you go to steal, when you enter into somebody’s house in the night, go on watching your breath. When you have opened the treasure and the diamonds are there, go on watching your breath, and do whatsoever you want to do — but don’t forget watching the breath.”

The thief said, “This seems to be simple. No morality? No character needed? No other requirement?”

Nagarjuna said, “Absolutely none — just watch your breath.”

And after fifteen days the thief was back, but he was a totally different man. He fell at the feet of Nagarjuna and he said, “You trapped me, and you trapped me so beautifully that I was not even able to suspect. I tried for these fifteen days — it is impossible. If I watch my breath, I cannot steal. If I steal, I cannot watch my breath. Watching the breath, I become so silent, so alert, so aware, so conscious, that even diamonds look like pebbles. You have created a difficulty for me, a dilemma. Now what am I supposed to do?”

Nagarjuna said, “Get lost! — whatsoever you want to do. If you want that silence, that peace, that bliss, that arises in you when you watch your breath, then choose that. If you think all those diamonds and gold and silver is more valuable, then choose that. That is for you to choose! Who am I to interfere in your life?”

The man said, “I cannot choose to be unconscious again. I have never known such moments. Accept me as one of your disciples, initiate me.”

Nagarjuna said, “I have initiated you already.”

(From – Inspirational Stories)

The Divine Upholder of all – Story from Mahabharata – The fight between Arjun and Karna.

Value : Truth

Sub value : Faith, humility

There are many caveats of Mahabharata, some which may not be mentioned in the original. But many of them are very interesting and provide deep insights.This is one such story:

The battle of Kurukshetra was at its zenith, Arjuna and Karna were  fiercely fighting each other. It was an epic battle to witness,  with a  flurry of arrows were being exchanged rapidly from the quivers  of unparalleled warriors of that time.  It’s said that the Gods  too were witnessing this epic battle between the two great warriors. The impact of Arjuna’s arrows were so intense  that Karna’s chariot would  sway and be pushed back by 25-30 feet. People who witnessed this, were amazed  by  Arjuna’s skills. Karna wasn’t inferior either, his arrows would make   Arjuna’s chariot  sway and push it behind by 3-4 feet.

Lord Krishna, Arjuna’s charioteer  would  always applaud Karna, every time his arrow would hit Arjuna’s chariot, much to Arjuna’s dismay;   but not once did Krishna applaud Arjuna’s skills. At the end of the day, Arjuna  unable to control his annoyance , he asked Krishna “Oh Lord, the arrows I shot at Karna’s chariot,  the  displaced the chariot like a feather in the wind, but not once did you appreciate me or congratulate me. Rather you appreciated Karna’s skill knowing well it wasn’t as potent as mine”.

    

The all knowing Lord Krishna smiled and replied “Oh, Arjuna, remember, your chariot was being protected by “Hanuman” at the top as the flag, “Me” as your charioteer in the front and by “Sheshnag” at its wheels, yet the whole chariot would still sway and displace whenever the valiant Karna would hit us with his arrows”. Karna’s chariot was not protected by any such force, he was on his own, yet he fought  so valiantly”.

It is said that after the battle of Kurukshetra was over, Krishna refused to get off the chariot till Arjuna got down first. Once Krishna alighted from the chariot, it burst into flames and turned to dust.

Krishna then said “Oh Arjuna, your chariot was destroyed by Karna long time ago, it is I who was protecting it thus far”.

“Never in your life have the arrogance to say that you have achieved something, if you have achieved something, it is the divine will, it is the Divine Intervention that has always protected you, cleared your path and gave you the right opportunities at the right time”.

Learning : Its God’s grace and benevolence, that protects us from many pitfalls and dangers in life. Our lives and situations, whether they are good, bad, horrible or passable, all happen with Him as the upholder; as the scriptures say not a blade of grass moves without His consent.

 

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